As the winter solstice kicks off a new season on December 22, it''s time to pull out those attractive puffy winter jackets and look forward to a snow day. Winter is upon us. In celebration of the winter solstice, we''ve put together some fun activities for this season.

There''s a lot to love about these ch illy winter months — an excuse to curl up inside and read a book all weekend, eat yummy warm foods, and head to the slopes for some skiing or snowboarding. Earlier this year, a panel with the Union of Concerned Scientists found that heavy snowfalls could be linked to more moisture in the air due to global climate change. Reuters reported, "This extra moisture is likely to bring on extraordinary flooding with the onset of spring in the Northern Hemisphere, as deep snowpack melts and expected heavy rains add to seasonal run-off, the scientists said in a telephone briefing." Better start embracing snowy activities. Better yet, embrace green ones that are less damaging to the environment. What''s your favorite winter activity or tradition? And do you have some tips for making it more eco-friendly? List your suggestions in the comments below. Check out a list of some of our favorite green (or greener) winter activities:   


Save up your fruit and veggie scraps during the winter season to create the coolest snowman on the block. Get creative and choose eco-friendly options like rocks or bark instead of coal for Frosty''s eyes. Or, go really material-free and decorate your yard with snow angels — you only need your body for that!


What better excuse to curl up on the couch and sip hot cocoa than a wintry January day? Make sure you''re using organic, fair trade chocolate in your mug and accompany it with something other than a marshmallow, which are made out of gelatin (boiled animal bones). We suggest vegan marshmallows that can even be found in cool winter shapes. 


Ditch the gas-guzzling snowmobile or car and hit the slopes for a fun day of sledding. Arguably, wooden sleds are better than plastic ones. Or, do some recycling and make your own! 


Get outside this winter for some free, green fun. Grab your friends and neighbors and embrace the season with a snowball fight! If you want to get serious about building a fort, you can follow instructions, otherwise you can make up the rules and play until the sun comes out! 


A cold winter day is the best excuse to laze around and cuddle up inside. Stay warm and green inside — all weekend if you want — with an organic cotton throw or real wool blankets. 


Turn of your cell phone, computer and television and curl up on the couch with a good book. Even better, why not hit your local library and check out some books on ways to go green in 2012.


Many families would agree there''s nothing better than spending a night sitting around a burning wood stove. Compared to their oil and gas counterparts however, they can cause a bit of stir in the environmental community. Stoves built before the 1990s are generally inefficient and the US Environmental Protection Agency suggests replacing yours with a newer version or a more energy efficient appliance.


With evidence that the globe is warming and ski resorts needing snow for business, many are taking initiatives to go green. If you''re one to hit the slopes in winter, why not do a bit of research on which resorts are taking the leap to become more environmentally friendly. 


When it is too cold outside for outdoor activities but you''re itching to get out of the house, why not venture out to an art gallery or museum and treat yourself to some cultural and educational fun? Look into visiting an eco-friendly venue, such as The Museum of Natural History, which undertook a sustainability review in 1998, and as a result was able to implement eco-friendly practices


A popular activity in for kindergarten age children and up, making paper snowflakes may not be the most eco-friendly way to decorate your home. However, try encouraging your children to gather old newspapers, magazines and books to make some recycled, interesting and unique decorations.

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